Marine Specialist

If working on water and travelling the world interests you then apply for a job as a Marine Specialist. As a Marine Specialist you may work with Special Forces or the Navy while operating and commanding specialised watercraft including amphibious craft.

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Job Overview

About the Job

Role. The role of the Royal Australian Corps of Transport (RACT) is to control and operate Army owned surface transport, other than unit transport, and to provide movement control, terminal, postal and Army aspects of air logistic support to the Army.

The RACT plays a pivotal role within the distribution network of the Australian Army. The men and women of the RACT plan and deliver the required personnel, stores and equipment, Combat Service Support (CSS) through the distribution process utilising road, rail, sea and air transportation.

The RACT has many tasks to perform including operating the Army fleet of landing craft and amphibious vehicles, all forms of road transport, distribution centres and specialist units that prepare, pack and dispatch supplies dropped from the air. To perform these tasks, the RACT is equipped with a large selection of vehicles including light trucks, heavy cargo and specialist vehicles 60 tonne semi-trailers. This also includes amphibious and small landing craft, such as:

  • LCM-8 watercraft
  • LARC V
  • Small Watercraft up to 6m
  • Noosa Cat

The Marine Specialist is a soldier who operates a variety of specialist watercraft, including amphibious craft and performs operator maintenance on Army marine vessels. A Marine Specialist also transports all forms of cargo across the sea, inland water ways and ship to shore operations (LOTS). Postings can include Land Unit and Specialist Forces.

Main Job Functions:

  • Operate Army watercraft and amphibious craft
  • Perform deck hand duties on board Army Watercraft
  • Operate weapons fitted to amphibian and landing craft and
  • Operate communication and electronic navigation equipment.
Other Ranks - Non Technical

Join the ADF with appropriate high school passes

Learn more about Entry Methods

Salary can be over $65,000 p.a. on completion of initial employment training. This salary includes Uniform and Service allowance.


Key Information

National Qualifications

Army is currently undertaking a review of civil accreditation gained through Army training.

Salary & Allowances

Salary while undertaking Military (Recruit) Training: $1,406 per fortnight ($36,571 per year).*

Salary while undertaking Initial Employment Training: $1,607 per fortnight ($41,795 per year).*

While under training, you will also receive $395 per fortnight ($10,288 per year pro rata) Trainee Allowance.

Salary (excluding allowances) on completion of Initial Employment Training: $2,009 per fortnight ($52,244 per year).*

In addition to your salary, you will also receive Service Allowance of $527 per fortnight ($13,717 per year) except while undertaking Military (Initial) or Employment training. This allowance compensates a member for the unique requirements that service life may impose on an individual and his or her family.

To assist you in maintaining your uniforms in good order and condition, you will also receive a Uniform Allowance of $16 per fortnight ($419 per year).

Each General Entry job in the Australian Defence Force is classified into a pay grade. This particular job is classified as a Pay Grade 3 occupation.

Salary will continue to increase based on rank and the number of years of service completed in that rank. Pay grade may also increase following the acquisition of additional skills and completion of advanced courses.

Refer to the Salary Scales for further details.

* Please note that these figures do not include compulsory deductions for taxation; meals, accommodation and utilities (as applicable); and superannuation.


The majority of Marine Specialists, up to 80%, are posted to Townsville in QLD. Limited posting opportunities also exist in VIC-Melbourne, NSW -Sydney, WA - Perth, Pilbara, NT - Darwin and QLD - Cairns.



Applicants must be aged between 17 and 55 years of age inclusive on day of entry.

Applicants will not be allowed to enter the ADF until they achieve a minimum of 17 years of age, however they may be able to initiate the application process from 16 years and six months of age, depending upon the capacity of their local recruiting centre.

Education & Experience

Completion of Australian Year 10 education (or equivalent) with passes in English and Mathematics.


You may be eligible to sit an Alternative Education Equivalency (AEE) assessment to ascertain your ability at the required educational level for this trade.

Further information is available here.

Medical & Fitness

To be enlisted or appointed, you must be medically and physically fit for entry to your chosen occupation. This is partially assessed from the completion of an extensive questionnaire covering your medical history, followed by a physical examination.

You will also be required to successfully pass a physical fitness test before appointment.

For further details on medical and physical fitness standards refer to Physical Fitness Standards for Entry into the ADF and Medical Process for Entry into the ADF.

Period of Service

You will be enlisted for an Initial Minimum Period of Service (IMPS) of four years. Subsequent periods of service may be offered subject to the requirements of the ADF and your suitability for further service. You may request discharge at any time provided you do not have an outstanding IMPS obligation.

Additional Requirements

In addition to being able to pass the Army swim test, applicants must be capable of passing the Maritime swim test, which involves swimming 100 metres (using any stroke) whilst wearing DPCU and boots and (without leaving the water) remain afloat out of depth for 5 minutes.

Applicants do not require a civilian licence to undertake the Defence driver component of their training. However, if the applicant is currently under a suspension or has their civilian licence cancelled, that applicant is not eligible to enlist within this trade until that suspension or cancellation has expired.


The application process to join the Australian Defence Force requires you to complete a series of aptitude tests which may include verbal, spatial and numerical ability and a general maths test. Some jobs may also require you to complete additional testing at a later date.

Psychology support staff will explain what is involved with each test.

The aptitude tests provide information about your suitability for the Defence Force and for particular jobs. Defence Force Recruiting can then help you identify jobs that best match your abilities.

Further information on the aptitude testing requirements can be found here.


Only Australian Citizens are permitted to serve in the ADF.

If you are a permanent resident of Australia, the ADF may consider a temporary deferral of the citizenship requirement if the position for which you are applying cannot be filled by an applicant who meets all the citizenship requirements, and then only in exceptional circumstances. You will be required to obtain Australian Citizenship as early as possible following enlistment or appointment.

Find out more in our Citizenship page or ask your local Defence Force Recruiting Centre.

Security Requirements

The Department of Defence requires ADF employees to have security clearances appropriate to their employment.

A process of background checks, collection of relevant information and, as required, interviews, enables the Australian Government Security Vetting Agency to make an informed assessment of an applicant's suitability for a security clearance.

The minimum security clearance level required is Negative Vetting Level 1, and current policy requires applicants to have a checkable background for the previous 10 years. Required information includes:

  • Residence
  • Employment
  • Education
  • Credit

Australian Citizenship is a requirement for a security clearance and a clearance will only be granted to a non-citizen in exceptional circumstances.

NOTE: The security clearance is critical to an applicants successful progression through the Army training system. If an applicant is unable to obtain the required security clearance in time, they will not be allowed to continue their training and may need to be re-allocated to another employment category. As such, it is strongly recommended that all applicants obtain the required documentation as soon as possible to provide the best opportunity to be employed in their preferred employment category.


Military Training

All General Entry recruits into the Australian Regular Army are required to complete the Recruit Course.

Total Duration: 80 days.

Location: Kapooka, Wagga Wagga, NSW.

Recruit training is the same for male and female entrants. During the 80 day Army Recruit Course you will be required to take part in physical training, weapon handling and shooting, first aid, drill and field craft. The training is deliberately challenging and has been designed to prepare you to be a soldier in today's Army. Recruits gain a sense of achievement, purpose and confidence during basic training, and on completion of the course feel justifiably proud of what they have achieved.

For more details on recruit training, refer to the Joining instructions. These instructions will provide you and your family with enough information to arrange your personal affairs before enlistment in the Army, and give you an idea of what you will be doing on the recruit course.

Further information is also available at the Army Recruit Training Centre website.

During Military (Initial Recruit) Training and (Initial) Employment Training, members may be required to pay a contribution towards meals, accommodation and utilities.

Employment Training

Driver Training Course

Medium Rigid Truck (Unimog) and G-wagon qualification pending suitability.

Location: Road Transport Wing, Army Logistic Training Centre, Puckapunyal, VIC.

Duration: Up to 26 Days.

Note: When attending the Drivers Course there is no requirement to hold a civilian licence. However, if the applicant is currently under a suspension or has their civilian licence cancelled, that applicant is not eligible to enlist within this employment category until that suspension or cancellation has expired.

Marine Specialist Basic Course:

Location: Maritime Wing, Army Logistic Training Centre, Townsville, QLD.

Duration: 39 days, not including weekends.

Note: Course duration may vary depending on public holidays and other Army requirements.

LARC V Operators Course:

Location: Maritime Wing, Army Logistic Training Centre, Ross Island, Townsville, QLD.

Duration: 20 days, not including weekends.

Note: Course duration may vary depending on public holidays and other Army requirements.